Version 9 software downgrade to my model S. I didn't buy a model 3.

Version 9 software downgrade to my model S. I didn't buy a model 3.

There are several things I dislike about this update designed for a single "horizontal model 3 screen".
When I bough my model S, I always thought I would be able to keep the functionality that it came with.

First I have to say I still love the car, but this is the first time that I am unhappy with Tesla for reducing functionality.

#1: Single view screen. Before we had 2 independent windows located top or bottom or full screen. For example the rear camera at the top, and energy on the bottom. All interchangeable position. Maps when navigating could be run in background, or turned off.
> Now there is only one universal "flexible window" at the very bottom of the screen. The rear camera view and all other function screens are down by the cup holders. Yes this could probably be good for the model 3 and future S/X designs with the computer high up on the dash. This is totally unacceptable for my model S vertical screen.

#2: Map stuck as the background. Really, did someone forget to program a close switch on the map? There is nothing wrong with a blank background.
> I could live with the map as an active background if the 2nd window and window swap functions are restored, I could just cover the map with my 2 independent windows.
> Maybe you let me choose the background when nothing is being displayed.

#3: This interface is not suitable for a vertical screen. It is designed for a horizontal screen located mid dash in height.
> Now all of the menus are at the very bottom of the screen, you know farthest away from the road and where your attention should be.

I am aware that Tesla wants to go to one horizontal screen for the future model S and X just like the model 3. Maybe this interface is perfect for that.

Just a final question for Tesla.
Why spend a premium of over $40,000 for a model S and essentially have the same features as the 3, albeit a larger vehicle?

When you defeature (minimize) a high end car you end up with a low end car.
How many monitors are on your desk at work, more than one? Ya know, you really only need one, you can just tab between the applications.

This is exactly what this update did to my car's desktop. It removed one of my monitors and replaced it with a fixed map while locking the position of the remaining monitor.

Will Tesla restore the lost functionality? I doubt it.

The Model S (all vertical screen interface) menus should be at the top of the display (not the bottom). 2 active screen windows, with zoom and swap like I purchased.

Going backward in my opinion.


A formerly satisfied happy customer in Ohio.

dsteal | October 9, 2018

Ugh. Now I'm not looking forward to the v9 update that is getting downloaded tonight. But all UI redesigns tend to feel bad at the start until you get used to them. Let's hope that is all it is.

richardcook | October 9, 2018

@dsteal It really is a down grade from 2 windows to 1 window. I really liked having my Satellite radio showing at the bottom and the rear view at the top. Can't have both displayed at the same time now.

Turbo25 | October 9, 2018

I completely agree. Tesla tried to harmonize the software between the horizontal and vertical screens and completely screwed it up. I have my Model S for 4 years and it is a major downgrade

The horizontal screen in the Model 3 is at eye level. The bottom portion of the vertical screen isn't! I love having the camera app open as it is really beneficial given the significant blindspots in the Model S. It is now impossible to use safely because it is on the bottom of the VERTICAL screen and i have to take my eyes completely off the road to look at it.

Tesla - please fix this. You have taken away significant functionality.

I suggest emails to the company. I will be sending one.

Mathew98 | October 9, 2018

Check the other rollback post for emailing address.

tes-s | October 9, 2018

@dsteal - do you have to upgrade? Can't you simply not install it?

tes-s | October 9, 2018

@dsteal - do you have to upgrade? Can't you simply not install it?

sr.smr | October 9, 2018

Maybe because V9 has an uneven amount of cylinders it's screwed up and we have to wait for V10(:

In all seriousness, I never saw so much negative reaction to this horrible "upgrade." Tesla really screwed this up and I hope they do something about it soon. I'm going to call everyone on my Tesla contact list to voice my objection.

The turn on off all AP2 cameras provides the best autopilot experience to date and is the only positive highlight of the upgrade.

dsteal | October 9, 2018

@tes-s That's what I was wondering now. Can I simply decline the upgrade for a while? Or forever? The problem is I won't get any fixes going forward.

murphyS90D | October 9, 2018

If you haven't installed an upgrade and take your car in for service it is very likely they will do the install whether you want it done or not.

Slavas | October 9, 2018

The menu at the bottom of the screen is very cool. You just need to turn on the autopilot and lie down horizontally. But I agree that for those who do not smoke marijuana and do not have an autopilot better back menu up

Anthony J. Parisio | October 9, 2018

I'm sorry I like the V9 . I get they should have left split screen as an option. Other than that the system is an upgrade!!!!!!

Putt Putt | October 9, 2018

I like it . but I kept the map on top and waze on the bottom on trips anyway...I did notice they took away the distance reading when backing up on the center screen. I was backing in to a supercharger today using the backup camera, and hag to look away to see the distance in the dash display when I got close to the sign.

dsteal | October 9, 2018

Maybe I will hold off on the upgrade as long as I can. True that service will upgrade me when I take the car in, but I could hold off for some time.

I know that UX/UI isn't a perfect science, but given the number of complaints from MS owners, I wonder if they did much user testing of the UI designed for a horizontal screen... but now showing up on a vertical screen. That's a big difference.

SUN 2 DRV | October 9, 2018

I've declined Tesla update before, until there was something that I really wanted that made the tradeoff worthwhile.

You can cancel the daily update notification screen every day and nothing bad happens.

If you want to avoid even getting that notification for a while longer just turn OFF WiFi and Tesla will deprioritize pushing V9 to your car. I have WiFi OFF to work around some TuneIn problems and I haven't been offered V9 yet...

stevenmaifert | October 9, 2018

@dsteal - There is a block on the service center intake sheet where you can decline updates when taking it in. I did that until I had to have the MCU replaced and that required me to upgrade from V7 to V8. Held off until then.

kerryglittle | October 9, 2018

Tell us how you really feel Richard. LOL. But yeah I hear ya. Not a fan either, Much more cluttered screen and difficult to get where you want on it. One thing we can count on from Tesla is change.

dsteal | October 9, 2018

I just watched a short video on v9. I should probably have done that before commenting. I prefer having the backup camera at the top. And it's nice to be able to get rid of the nav screen sometimes, but I personally have the map up 99% of the time. I just like to be able to see what traffic is ahead of me. So for me, it's probably fine to just upgrade and not worry about it. I'm sure I will find stuff that I don't like as much. Hopefully there will be some things that I like more.

thranx | October 9, 2018

@dsteal; it's fortunate for you that you have the map up most of the time.

Because now you have no choice.

sbeggs | October 9, 2018

Do not prefer v9. Like having camera on top. Want to have distances to obstacle contact while traveling at low speeds backing up or inching forward in parking spots.
Like being able to flip apps from top to bottom such as energy trip use, nav, music, etc.

Mi75d | October 9, 2018

Good assessment. I remarked on the switch from having icons at the top to the bottom, which is a usability disaster because it takes the driver’s attention away from the road for too long. I second your comments, especially with regard to having two half-size windows that allows the driver maximum flexibility in customizing the car for himself. This is an essential feature of a Tesla, because Tesla is really a computer-car, not just a car with a screen.

I also noted two other problems. The icon for the Internet and the icon for Satellite View are the same, which is a rookie usability error. Also, the HVAC system doesn’t really have an icon, and what it has doesn’t light up as a different color when it’s on, so you have to poke it to see if the system is on.

Also, the little road show in the binnacle is way too flickery and the little cars don’t show object permanence. It’s way too distracting, and doesn’t have enough utility to justify it.

booradlly | October 11, 2018

Sign the petition

jordanrichard | October 11, 2018

Question for those complaining about the changes. Just how often are you using the functions that changed, that makes these changes earth shattering?

Mi75d is not the only one I have seen that didn’t like the HVAC set up. Just how often are you changing the settings? I have had my MS since Mar 2014 and set it to 70 degs and haven’t changed it since?

carlk | October 11, 2018

Horses for courses I like V9 much better than the old one. For example, contrary to the opinion of the previous poster, major icons at bottom is much better and easier to reach than on top imo. A lot of people complain only because it's not the same as they knew before. It just take some time to get use to those changes. The only thing I agree with is for camera on top if you have been using it that way. Tesla likely will make modifications to address that later unless there is an underlying reason for not to.

As someone has pointed out in another thread V9 is the foundation of FSD. A lot is designed base on that and is still a work in progress. We all know Model 3 the entire car has been designed with FSD in mind too. It's no surprise Tesla wants to go the same direction as the Model 3 instead of having the Model 3 simulate the old V8 in S/X. Just to note contrary to in the beginning you don't hear anyone complains the aspect ratio or placement of their screen in the Model 3 community anymore.

As for whiners like the op the easy solution is to buy a model 3 and save yourself $40,000. No?

Rocky_H | October 11, 2018

@Mi75d, Quote: “Also, the HVAC system doesn’t really have an icon, and what it has doesn’t light up as a different color when it’s on, so you have to poke it to see if the system is on.”

What? Wow, that’s dumb.

@jordanrichard, Quote: “Mi75d is not the only one I have seen that didn’t like the HVAC set up. Just how often are you changing the settings? I have had my MS since Mar 2014 and set it to 70 degs and haven’t changed it since?”

Multiple times every single day.

Bonzooloo | October 11, 2018

Hating V9, too much time with eyes on the screen and off the road.

S75RedRidingHood | October 11, 2018

Change is always hard specially for subjective matter like UI/UX.
However, people forget the most significant new features 360 blind spot detection. For me this is the biggest move toward automation; it not only display the car around your vehicle, it also classify what type of cars are they. I read lots of posts here complaining about no blind spot detection and now it is here, people forgot about it and complains about UI instead!!!

richardcook | October 11, 2018

To @carlk - First off I am not a whiner. I did not make this personal, why did you?
I will answer with "you are sheep"

So... To all the sheep,

The Model S/X vertical screen (V8) is (was) like two monitors for your computer at home or work. You could open the functional displays as camera, energy, audio, map, etc. and choose where to locate top or bottom or full screen. Now (V9) there is only one universal shared "window" at the very bottom of the screen. How would you feel if the 2nd monitor on you computer was now forced to always display Nicklodeon? Those who say, "I don't see a problem with it" I always keep Nicklodeon on the 2nd display, and now it's even bigger. And my computer got an upgrade!

You still had choice removed. Really - you don't care about this reduction of function? What about next year?

TESLA: The fix should not be that difficult. Restore the 2nd active screen windows, with zoom (full screen) and swap like I purchased with my model S. I don't dislike the combination menu, although more motion (clicks) are required to activate anything. I can even live with the map permanently as the background, so long as I get my 2 windows back. Oh, how about a choice of upper or lower menus, or is that asking too much?

TESLA should be adding functionality, both to self drive and the UI.. not removing it. Going the wrong direction.

Why is there no e-mail from TESLA to the Model S/X vertical screen owners? "Sorry we know we removed functionality from the interface. We do plan on restoring it shortly" Probably because they don't.

Sorry if the Sheep comment offends. Maybe substitute "Faithful Followers"

Jeff A | October 11, 2018

@RichardCook "TESLA: The fix should not be that difficult. Restore the 2nd active screen windows, with zoom (full screen) and swap like I purchased with my model S. I don't dislike the combination menu, although more motion (clicks) are required to activate anything. I can even live with the map permanently as the background, so long as I get my 2 windows back. Oh, how about a choice of upper or lower menus, or is that asking too much?"

Bravo -- this is software, it should be trivial to enable a choice to the user to have the current V9 or enable the 2 panel approach I can live with the app launhcer but just give me back the 2-panel split screen without the always on nav/map and I am a happy camper. :)

Rocky_H | October 11, 2018

@S75RedRidingHood, Quote: “However, people forget the most significant new features 360 blind spot detection. […] people forgot about it and complains about UI instead!!!”

You seem to not realize that there are a few years’ worth of the cars that have no autopilot hardware, so they get no blind spot monitoring or autopilot features, and just a couple of things that would be barely useful from this update. Having a decent interface is about all they have, so it’s pretty important, and getting this change that ruins their interface is a fairly big deal when there aren’t significant positives that go with it.

@richardcook +1
@Jeff A +1

carlk | October 11, 2018

@richardcook Like anyone else you are entitled to say what you like or not like. On the other hand you're whining when you say you did not buy the model 3 because of this. Totally unnecessary to do that.

stf5018 | October 11, 2018

The more I drive with sw V9, the less I like it. Mainly my issues are with the user interface. It requires significantly more touches on the glass for the functions I use most, which is just dangerous. The camera should be able to be placed anywhere, and the lower half is much harder to see and thus also more dangerous. I rarely if ever use the navigation, so why is it not only up all the time, but always taking up valuable real estate that could be used for something I use all the time like music? Please let me have music and camera up at the same time at least. Preferably let me switch the camera to the top. This update is a significant nuisance and I now consider it a downgrade. I am posting this everywhere I can in hopes that it makes a difference.

PBEndo | October 11, 2018

It would be nice if they kept the ability to have the large maps and smaller media arrangement since that is a popular setting. If they try to retain the existing main layout scheme (NAV with resizeable media) and merely allow other apps such as the camera to replace the map they will need to redesign the other apps to accommodate the new resizing options. Otherwise the browser or media app will cover some of the necessary information in the other apps. They do that now with the map but that just reduces the amount of map that you can see and the remaining is still useful. If it treated the energy tab, camera, phone the same way, those apps may be unusable when a large chunk is covered by the extended media player or browser.

Captain_Zap | October 12, 2018

I'm still not installing even though the reminder is annoying.

Whiner's? Really? They just want the car that they bought. I was happy with my car almost 6 years ago and I loved it even more back then. Why would I want to replace it with a huge frustration... like the reduced fob range that we now have?

bamboovillage | October 20, 2018

In taking the time to express my disappointment and frustrations with the 9.0 software update, I have become enraged that Tesla Motors has arbitrarily changed the functionality of my Model S. The software update is not an improvement and greatly diminishes my driving experience. I would be even more enraged if this software update was designed and introduced merely to bring consistency across the platform with the model 3. (Mercedes would NOT change platform on Maybach to accommodate C class. NOT all Tesla owners want their Model X, S to be to be like a 3, we did not purchase a 3. Please give us our Model S & X back.

barrykmd | October 20, 2018

The above two posts sum up the 20+ threads about V9 very well.

PatientFool | October 20, 2018

i love the update.

Tâm | October 20, 2018

Great Thread! Thanks @RichardCook for the write up!

We are not asking for another physical moitor instatllation here. It's just like paying for a 75kWh battery then being software limited to roll back to 40 kWh . Still works great but why do we need to suffer?

Tesla has a good track record of listening to its customers although it may take some time.

But it's important to let Tesla knows though. Please write to you own Tesla Account page and please sign the petition mentioned above.

Yodrak. | October 20, 2018

"... you're whining when you say ..."

Please stop whining about whiners.

lilbean | October 20, 2018

Whining about the whiners who are whining. ;)
Oh great. Now I'm whining about the whiners who are whining about the whiners who are whining.

BozieB | October 20, 2018

In regards to the new v9 update, In my opinion it does not serve Tesla well to show such a fragmented loyalty. I agree that many are disappointed in the functionality of this update. Many see it as a dumbing down of their MS or MX into the lower priced M3. Ergo, the vertical screen versus the horizonal screen IU.
Then there is the debate that the older MS's AP1 will not gain as much functionality as the new MS's A2.5, because of the lack of the new AP equipment.
Given a lively debate with Tesla, I feel that they will honor most if not all of our requests, it is just software, after all.
To go online where the Chanoses and more of his ilk reside, will not work in our or Tesla’s best interest. United we stand, Divided we all will fail.
Keep in mind there is still a battle going on. Write Tesla, Contact Tesla, but issuing ultimatums, well, we are more diplomatic than that, aren't we?

sr.smr | October 20, 2018

Great summary richardcook! I submitted an executive escalation and feedback email and received no reply. Customer support is not what it used to be. I'm getting this sick feeling that we will never have the convenience of what was the BEST user interface the car ever had.

carlk | October 20, 2018

Captain_Zap You have answered your own question. Didn't you realize the Model 3 design is indeed the latest and greatest compares to your "6 years old" S? Everyone seems to say the vertical screen is better but at the same time they don't want to use bottom half of the screen. Can you see the point? Like I said people can express what they like or not like but this "I did not buy a Model 3" is nothing but an irrational whine.

bill | October 21, 2018

All the whiners are shorts! :)

I love seeing those that are unhappy with the update that have berated the people that complain about something now turn into a bunch of whiners!!!!

If you don't like it sell your car and buy the other manufacturers that are doing it right!!!! :):)

Sorry but I just could not help myself!

SbMD | October 21, 2018

@bill - selling your car at 3 months was your decision. Having a UI that needs improvement was Tesla’s decision and open for feedback.

Perhaps not finding joy in other people’s concerns is a better way to engage people. Just saying.

lilbean | October 21, 2018

Bye, Version Eight

So you did the update
Now it's just too late
Can't go back to version eight
There's just so much to hate
So sad you took the bait
I knew I was right to wait

Tldickerson | October 21, 2018

Amen, bean

lilbean | October 21, 2018


SbMD | October 21, 2018

@lil, can you do it in Haiku:

I downloaded nine
Only to find some flaws that
Need to be fixed fast


PBEndo | October 21, 2018

I see what you did
Using the V9 lament
for haiku rebirth

lilbean | October 21, 2018

Nice, @SbMD!